More than half the tobacco producers in this area will probably continue to grow tobacco despite the buyout; however, those who have chosen to quit raising the crop will more than likely convert their tobacco barns for other uses and have extra land to grow new crops.
Many Casey County producers are already in the goat business and will convert the tall barns used to hang tobacco for raising goats, while others will be used for storage of forage and farm machinery, area extension agricultural agents said.
Steve Heightchew, Casey agricultural agent, said the goat industry, including, meat, dairy and pigmy goats, is on the rise in his county where many farmers will stop tobacco production. Some people have already converted their barns.
Since a lot of growers will continue their burley production in Boyle County, Jerry Little, county ag agent, has not seen a lot of changes in barns.